The UAE will host Expo 2020!
  • Arabic
  • French
  • German
  • Spanish
Supported by the UAE National Media Council

Abdullah bin Zayed and German counterpart discuss bilateral relations, regional developments

posted on 28/08/2015

BERLIN: H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, and Frank-Walter Steinmeier, German Foreign Minister, have discussed the excellent friendship and cooperative relations between the two friendly countries and ways of enhancing them to serve the common interest of both nations.

During the meeting yesterday evening in Berlin, both sides stressed the importance of supporting regional and international efforts to lay the foundations of peace, security and stability in the region to confront the current challenges, particularly terrorism, and address the emergence of organisations seeking to impose themselves as an alternative to state and national legitimacy.

H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed pointed out the achievement of great development in bilateral relations between the two countries in all fields, which have created a strategic partnership that serves the interests of both countries. He expressed his hopes that the future will witness more cooperation in various sectors, to better serve future ambitions, especially in the areas of development of economy, investment and energy.

The two ministers also discussed joint efforts between the UAE and Germany in Afghanistan, especially in the military, security, economic, development and humanitarian fields. During the meeting both parties reviewed a number of issues of common concern in several areas, including coordination and consultation on a number of regional issues, particularly the Arab coalition initiative, Operation Restoring Hope, for security and stability in Yemen. H.H. Sheikh Abdullah praised the role of Saudi Arabia in the leadership of the coalition.

Sheikh Abdullah commended the insightful outlook of The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, and his wise government, in dealing with the situation in Yemen as required by the circumstances to defend the people of Yemen, to ensure the border security of Saudi Arabia and to keep the Gulf security away from imminent threats and challenges.

His Highness re-affirmed that this is a continuation of the firm stance of Saudi Arabia to support the brotherly people of Yemen, adding that Saudi Arabia has always sought and continued to make a great effort to ensure the stability of Yemen on both political and economic levels, to achieve the aspirations of the people of Yemen and their security, stability and sustainable development in all aspects of life.

Sheikh Abdullah pointed out the relief and humanitarian role played by the UAE and Saudi Arabia, sending several aircrafts and ships loaded with relief materials and medical supplies to Aden immediately after the announcement of the liberation of Aden.

H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed and Mr Steinmeier reviewed the latest developments in Syria and Libya, stressing the importance of efforts by the UN special envoy to Libya, Bernardino Leon, in addition to the importance of supporting the Libyan dialogue to form a 'Government of national concord' to achieve stability, to meet the aspirations of the Libyan people and to safeguard the country's territorial unity.

The German Foreign Minister re-affirmed the importance of the strong relations between his country and the UAE, stressing the keenness of the two countries on the development of mechanisms for joint action in various political, economic and investment aspects.

He added that the UAE and Germany have built joint cooperation on solid foundations to help achieve their ambitions, saying that the policies of the UAE enjoy praise and appreciation in both regional and international arenas. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UN praises pioneering humanitarian role of the UAE

posted on 28/08/2015

GENEVA: An official delegation from the Dubai International Humanitarian Aid and Development Conference and Exhibition, DIHAD, visited the UN headquarters in Geneva last week to discuss the thirteenth edition of the DIHAD conference, covering topics, speakers and participating organisations.

The visit was highlighted by a meeting with executives and decision makers from the UN and inviting them to share their expertise at the 13th DIHAD Conference and Exhibition which will be held next year at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre between 21st- 23rd March 2016, under the theme, "The Importance of Innovation in Humanitarian Aid and Development". The delegation was presided over by Dr. Abdul Salam Al Madani, Executive Chairman of DIHAD and DISAB, accompanied by Gerhard Putman Cramer, Director of DIHAD and DISAB.

The Dubai International Humanitarian Aid and Development Conference and Exhibition is one of the most pioneering international events focusing on the humanitarian and development fields, and is organised annually in Dubai under the patronage of Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. DIHAD attracts all humanitarians and societies working in this field from around the world to join their efforts and exchange knowledge and updates in addition to promote and develop new humanitarian techniques and speed the response to emergencies and catastrophes occurring across the globe.

The delegation left the UAE last week and began their official tour by visiting Michael Moller, Director-General, Office of the United Nations. Dr. Madani, accompanied by Gerhard Putman Cramer, discussed with Moller the scientific programme of the 13th DIHAD conference. Moller appraised the topics that will be discussed in the agenda of next year, and further applauded the efforts exerted by the organisers of DIHAD for the past 12 years.

During his visit, Dr. Al Madani also met with Elhadj As Sy, Secretary-General of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, IFRC, and William Lacy Swing, Director-General at the International Organisation for Migration, IOM, in addition to a number of officials from the UN. Dr. Al Madani extended his gratitude to all UN organisations for their continuous support and participation at the DIHAD Conference and Exhibition, he also invited them to be part of the 13th edition of DIHAD.

William Swing said that he admired the pioneering role that the UAE is playing in the humanitarian and development fields. He also complimented all the UAE organisations that take part in DIHAD every year for their generous funding, aid and development provided for humans and cities living in crisis, conflict, or disasters, such as the Emirates Red Crescent, the Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, and the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Humanitarian and Charity Establishment.

Most of the UN organisations confirmed their attendance and participation at the DIHAD conference and exhibition next year, and they also dedicated a representative of each organisation to be present during the DISAB meetings, one of which is expected to be held next October.

At the end of their visit, the UAE delegation visited the UAE Permanent Mission in Geneva, where they met with Obaid Salem Saeed Al Zaabi, Ambassador/Representative of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations and Other International Organisations in Geneva. Dr. Al Madani shared with Mr Al Zaabi the agenda of DIHAD for next year, and presented the achievements of their visit to the UN headquarters. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE sets a role model for empowerment of women: Lubna Al Qasimi

posted on 28/08/2015

Sheikha Lubna Bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development and President of Zayed University, stressed that celebrating the UAE Women's Day marks a milestone event allowing the UAE to stand tall in the international arena.

'The UAE has set itself up as a role model in the empowerment of women for the building and advancement of the nation.

This event conveys a crystal-clear message that the UAE has established itself as a pioneer in all fields of development fields as men and women shoulder their duties equally and without any discrimination," she added.

Sheikh Lubna went on to say that the 28th of August coincides with the foundation date of the UAE General Women's Union in 1975 and that this special day will always be a source of pride for UAE women. She further said that the UAE, since its establishment four decades ago, had its sight firmly set on integrating women into all sectors of life as major contributors to development efforts in our country, as well as on achieving gender balance in all development fields.

"Today, we can see that the tremendous efforts and contribution of our wise leadership have culminated in the promotion of the status of UAE women. This was only possible thanks to the tremendous contribution of the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the Founder of the UAE, who, together with his brothers, members of the Supreme Council and Rulers of the Emirates, have spared no effort and laid strong foundations for the empowerment of women and promotion of their capacities. This was evidenced by the fact the UAE's Constitution provided for equality between men and women in all rights and obligations" she added.

The same approach has been embraced by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and Their Highnesses Members of the Supreme Council and Rulers of the Emirates.

Thus, there was a succession of achievements on the part of UAE women, allowing them to take up a pioneering role in all fields regionally and internationally and holding high-profile government positions, including the posts of minister and ambassador and active members of the Federal National Council. Also, the UAE women are making increasing contributions in the education field as well as in all professional domains including advanced, specialised and technical positions. They put considerable amount of effort into areas that were once out of the reach of women like the armed forces and police. Indeed, UAE women were able to make a resounding echo and achieve notable successes in the different business and investment areas, in addition to acquiring a highly respected status.

"The historic achievements of the UAE women, and the excellent example presented to the whole world in terms of woman empowerment could not have been achieved without the unlimited support and sponsorship of H.H. Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, GWU, Supreme President of the Family Development Foundation, FDF, and Head of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood. HH has given the UAE women her utmost care and has put all efforts to pave the way for the progress of UAE women so they can positively contribute to the country's development and advancement," Sheikha Lubna added.

She concluded, "Today we are praying to the Almighty Allah to bless our visionary leadership for their dedication and support to the cause of UAE women empowerment throughout the past decades. We further express our gratitude to H.H. Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak for dedicating the 28th of August to be the UAE Women's Day in recognition of the role and achievements of UAE women in all fields. So, we congratulate all UAE women in this significant day and pray to the Almighty to sustain their glorious march and prosperity.' – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Arab League congratulates Sheikha Fatima on Emirati Women's Day

posted on 28/08/2015

CAIRO: The Arab League has congratulated H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, on the occasion of the 1st Emirati Women's Day, observed on 28th August.

The date marks the anniversary of the creation of the General Women's Union (GWU) in 1975, and is considered a chance to celebrate the achievements of Emirati women since the group was founded.

In a statement issued by the Women, Family and Childhood Department, the pan-Arab organisation acknowledged the significance of the day to reflect on the achievements and gains made by the GWU whose contributions have propelled women to a prestigious level in the UAE community.

The statement added that day demonstrated the UAE leadership's will to advance women's causes and enhance the vital role of the GWU in the development and empowerment of Emirati and Arab women.

The Arab League's statement also hailed Sheikha Fatima's unflinching support for women's issues at local, Arab and regional levels, and her persistent efforts to grant women their full political, economic and social rights, being a key partner in the process of development and nation-building. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -

Ministry of Labour marks Emirati Women's Day

The Ministry of Labour is marking Emirati Women's Day, which annually falls on August 28th, as an implementation of the directives of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood.

Dr. Omar Abdul Rahman Al Nuaimi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Policy and Strategy at the MoL, said in a speech at a ceremony which was held at the Ministry in Dubai, "The UAE has made all efforts to engage Emirati women in the development process and pushed them to participate across all fields, and helped them reach higher levels of professional excellence, locally and internationally."

He added, "The Ministry of Labour fully believes in the role played by women in the development process as an active partner, where the Ministry adopts the same government approach to support women and enable them to achieve success and excellence, and so today women fill administrative positions at the Ministry level and bear responsibilities efficiently."

During the ceremony, attendees enjoyed the success stories of Emirati women such as Khawla Al Hosni who was honoured by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, for her excellent career performance that spanned over 22 years, during which she served the educational field up to this very moment, starting as a teacher and now heading the training and development department at the Ministry of Education.

Another is Noura Al Marzouki, who reviewed her career path which began at an early age filling several positions across different entities until today, when she has one of the leading positions in the Ministry, serving as the Chief Executive Officer of Innovation and the Director of the Strategic Planning and Performance Management Department.

Dr. Al Nuaimi honoured all participating women, including Sheikha Rashid Al Ali, the eldest employee in the Ministry of Labour, Sheikha Al Mazloum, a Senior Inspector, and Asma Ismail, the oldest legal researcher at the Ministry. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Al Dhaheri: Emirati women have proven their ability to support sustainable development of our nation

posted on 28/08/2015

On the occasion of Emirati Women's Day, Saeed Al Dhaheri, Assistant Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Labour, said that Emirati women have received care and support from the founding of the UAE until today, where the wise leadership under the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, gave great importance to women through the enhancement of their roles in the UAE community as a strategic partner in the development process, and the development of the basic pillars enabling women to compete in all professional fields, firmly, an approach which was followed by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan to complete the process of women's empowerment in the UAE community as shapers of future generations and achievers of top standards in all fields.

He added that the leading role of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, in supporting UAE women, has had a deep impact in building the capacities of women and enhancing their role in the community next to men to complete the process of development across the nation.

In turn, Emirati women have proved their worth in the sustainable development process, taken on leadership positions across all authorities, and made achievements that have not yet been accomplished by their counterparts in developed nations, becoming role models in local, regional and international forums.

Al Dhaheri added that Emirati Women's Day will be marked each year in recognition of their efforts and dedication in serving the country, and to highlight their excellence across all fields. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Influential Emirati women celebrate Emirati Women’s Day

posted on 28/08/2015

Critical contributions by women in UAE society owe a great deal to the sage example set by Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood.

So say women serving in top financial, political, legal and cultural posts across the country, who praised and thanked Sheikha Fatima for her continuous commitment in championing the cause of women's empowerment and establishing their role as catalysts of growth and development of the UAE.

Thursday marks the occasion of the first Emirati Women's Day, celebrating the achievements of Emirati women and their contributions to the growth of the nation.

Gulf News spoke to influential Emirati women about what this day means to them and how much the UAE has achieved in gender equality.

Noora Al Kaabi, CEO of Media Zone Authority in Abu Dhabi and Twofour54

She said UAE women now hold more than 60 per cent of public sector jobs and 30 per cent of senior decision-making positions in the government sector. Noura is proud of the role women now play in UAE society and says Sheikha Fatima is the one who paved the way for Emirati women to strive for more, achieve more and contribute more of their talents to the community, society and nation.

Noora, who is also a committee member of the UAE's Federal National Council (FNC) and the Economic Development Committee, chairwoman of the Emirates Media Measurement Company (EMMC) board, board member of the UAE's National Media Council, Abu Dhabi Media, Image Nation, the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and UAE University, is the first UAE national to be ranked on Foreign Policy magazine's ‘Top 100 Global Thinkers List'. In 2014, she was named one of Forbes Middle East's 30 Most Influential Women in Government.

"From founding the first women's organisation in 1976 to her on-going scholarship programme providing tuition for girls, Sheikha Fatima has initiated countless programmes to further women's rights and, in particular, to ensure access to education for girls. I am immensely proud of the role women now play in our society and I believe that our society is richer and stronger as a result of this inclusivity. Sheikha Fatima, the Mother of the Nation, is a truly inspirational role model for Emirati women,” Noora said.

Noora added that globally, women account for only 48 per cent of the total public sector workforce. "Almost a quarter of FNC members are female and women make up ten per cent of the UAE diplomatic workforce. Three is no doubt women are playing a critical role in building our nation and I am honoured to be one of them.”

Laila Mohammad Suhail, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), said "the mother of the nation, Sheikha Fatima, stands as a testament and inspiration to all the Arab women in the world and that this day serves as a reminder that women of the UAE have a bigger role to play in continuously reaffirming the country's pioneering position in the world.

"The UAE has made great strides in women's participation and gender equality and is continuously establishing its unique place on the world map as a country that truly values the contributions made by its women across every sphere. In the last few years especially, the UAE has strongly emerged as a powerful international force championing the cause of women empowerment and equal rights. Our women leaders have played an extremely instrumental role in driving the growth of the UAE and ushering it into a new era of progress and development,” said Laila, who is the first woman to lead DFRE and is a Board Member of the Dubai Events Council and Head of the Women's Sports Committee.

Laila said all these achievements by women in the UAE have largely been possible because of Sheikha Fatima's strong leadership and innumerable initiatives that have helped shaped the rights of Emirati women as equal partners and beneficiaries in the growth and evolution of modern societies in the UAE.

Mona Eisa Al Gurg, Director Retail at Eisa Saleh Al Gurg Group, Chairwoman of Young Arab Leaders and a founding board member of Hub Dubai, said Sheikha Fatima has focused Emirati women's attention on not just the local but also the global challenges facing women — from equal rights and education, literacy, the power of media and technology to affecting change in women's futures and much more.

Mona, who serves on the board of several non-profit organisations, is an active mentor at the Dubai Start-up sessions, and a frequent opinion columnist for Gulf News, was presented the Emirates Women's Award for outstanding achievers in 2010.

"Sheikha Fatima has given every woman a chance to thrive. We can and should be proud of all that we've achieved in terms of gender equality. The government introduced quotas for women on boards and the UAE joined countries like Norway to ensure that on a global level we reach higher standards. If we do not continue the campaign for women's rights and opportunities, the world we want to live, the country we all love and cherish, will not be what it should be. This day means a lot to me. It embraces a 21st century approach to advancing the rights and opportunities of women in the UAE and across the globe.”

Mona said to take it to the next level, she would like to see more women join the private sector. "I am, however, proud to see women in every field, from female engineers to supreme court judges to politicians, particularly as women used to shy away from these career options.”

Najla Faisal Al Awadhi, one of the first women in the history of the UAE to become a member of the FNC and a distinguished media pioneer in the Middle East who became the first Arab woman to be CEO of TV channels at Dubai Media Incorporated, said Sheikha Fatima understands that fair rights don't come naturally, but these are God-given rights that women must have, and gaining these rights means hard work, persistence, and patience. She said Sheikha Fatima's method has been an example for all Emirati women.

"Regardless of culture and geography, historically women obtain fair rights only when they themselves actively seek these rights. Sheikha Fatima has been very active since the founding of the UAE to give Emirati women a voice. We don't seek gender equality, we seek gender justice. The roles, rights and needs of men and women are different, and this is true both in our roles in the home and the work force. Marking this day makes me grateful because Emirati women have been blessed in many ways. These accomplishments prove that stereotypes about Muslim and Arab women must be questioned and not blindly accepted. Also, we shouldn't take these blessings for granted, areas of success must be sustained and areas for development must be worked on.”

Najla was selected one the ‘500 Most Influential Muslims' by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre in Jordan. She is a member of the World Economic Forum's Young Global Leaders and also a member of the Global Agenda Councils of the World Economic Forum. – Gulf News -


RTA holds miscellaneous events in celebration of Emirati Women day

posted on 28/08/2015

The Women's Committee at the Roads and Transport Authority, RTA, has held numerous events in celebration of Emirati Women's Day, launched by H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood. This year's celebrations are dedicated to show appreciation to the role of Emirati women serving in the armed forces as well as their noble contributions and courageous actions in this domain.

"The Women's Committee has celebrated the Emirati Women's Day by undertaking a host of distinguished events over two days," said Moaza Al Marri, Director of Marketing and Corporate Communication cum Deputy Chairwoman of Women Committee, RTA. "Female employees have been escorted to the Women Museum "Girls House" situated in the Old Market in order to brief them about the achievements of Emirati women in various fields. The gallery contains a number of innovative, intellectual, artist and scientific areas showcasing the profiles of Emirati women in the community.

The achievements of prominent Emirati female leaders, H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, H.H. Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, have been broadcasted via RTA's intranet to inspire female employees to follow suit in serving the nation," continued Ms Al Marri.

"More events have been staged in RTA's auditorium, including a presentation about the strategy of the Women's Committee and the distribution of gifts bearing the logo of the event. An online discussion panel was held to source views of female employees about the plan of the Women's Committee, and to receive feasible solutions to incorporate them in the 2016 Strategy.

"The RTA Women's Committee is keen on empowering female employees and placing more trust in their skills to help them take leading positions in the community, and play an active role capable of striking a balance between occupational and family life. We pride ourselves on the support accorded by our prudent leaders to the evolution of Emirati women and their pioneering efforts in joining the armed forces and demonstrating readiness to make every sacrifice for the nation, rendering them a role model to be emulated across the region. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE sets shining model for originality, openness and tolerance: Algerian official

posted on 28/08/2015

The UAE, which has hosted the Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies over the last two years, has "set a shining Arab model for blending originality with openness to other cultures and remained an active contributor to contemporary human civilisation by upholding the value of the moderate nation, based on principles of wisdom, rationalism, ethics and peaceful approach," a prominent Arab intellectual has said.

Speaking at a lecture hosted by the Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research, ECSSR, on "International Relations and the Dialogue between Civilisations", Professor Mustapha Cherif, former Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research, People's Democratic Republic of Algeria, said the issue of inter-cultural dialogue is important, though "complicated and thorny" as it features three topics in terms of history, geo-politics and thought.

'The dialogue between civilisations today is at the heart of the problem of international relations for the following reasons: first, after the end of the Cold War, the question of Western dominance and the search for a just international order emerged; second, civilisations today, Eastern or Western, need to talk, collaborate and cooperate to inspire a new common civilisation; and third, ignorance is at the root of the problem therefore, connections need to be made for peaceful coexistence. There will be no international peace without lasting relationships, justice and a focus on law and equality,' he told an elite crowd of diplomats, academia, intellectuals, researchers and media personnel.

'The dialogue between civilisations contributes to the prevention and resolution of conflicts, wars and crises. Credibility stems from self-criticism and a sense of responsibility to both understand the other and explain our own ambitions, especially in defending the rights of Muslims in the face of illegitimate and illegal attacks and interventions. By opening up, exercising due care, and making a contribution to overcoming the contradictions and weaknesses of Islamic societies, we may help to solve problems. The challenge lies in the need to achieve integration and harmony between the fixed and the variable, between unity and human pluralism, as well as in the necessity of innovation and the importance of avoiding self-isolation.' 'Muslims appear to comprise the last resistance to the Western model in all fields. It is necessary for the West to recognise that dialogue, as a civilised method, was promoted thanks to Islam. Islam was the first to establish and promote dialogue to prove the truth, facilitate coexistence, and achieve established goals. Common understanding and dialogue among civilisations is a requirement of human nature, necessitated by the conditions and rapid changes of the contemporary world. This requires a search for common denominators that bring human beings together and build bridges of friendship, cooperation and understanding among nations and peoples.' He noted that as schemes of Westernisation and hegemony over the Arab and Muslim peoples failed in the past, endeavours to abuse religions to realise political gains were also doomed. Religious extremism, he said, had not only impeded dialogue among civilisations, but also promoted the terms like 'conspiracy', 'conflict of civilisation', and 'globalisation of security' and given rise to Islamophobia in the Western communities.

'There is no modernity of one dimension nor civilisation and progress of one dimension. Rather there is a need to wed human interaction with religious and cultural diversity,' he added, emphasising that dialogue should produce change otherwise it is meaningless and pointless.

On the false image of Arabs and Muslims in the world, he stressed that it is their responsibility to correct that image by redressing self-inertia, establishing good governance and state of law, disseminating science and knowledge and upholding principles of openness, rationalism and peaceful approach. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Fuel Price Committee announces fuel prices for September 2015

posted on 28/08/2015

The Fuel Price Committee, chaired by Dr. Matar Al Nyadi, Under-Secretary for the Ministry of Energy, has announced gasoline and diesel prices for the month of September 2015.

All petrol stations in the UAE will retail diesel at Dh 1.86 per litre. Gasoline will be sold to consumers at Dh 1.89 per litre for E-plus (Octane 91 petrol), Dh 1.96 per litre for Special (Octane 95 petrol) and Dh 2.07 per litre for Super (Octane 98 petrol). The new prices will come into effect on Tuesday, September 1, 2015.

Dr. Al Nyadi said, "The prices are based on the average global prices for diesel and gasoline with the addition of operating costs and profit margins of the distributing companies. The Fuel Price Committee will next meet on September 28th to agree on the prices for the month of October." – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Emirates signs deal with MCI Group to become its official airline partner

posted on 28/08/2015

Emirates, the world's largest international airline by passenger traffic, and MCI, an international meetings, events and association management company, yesterday announced a global alliance which will see Emirates becoming the official airline of its large and international events. MCI in turn will be the preferred Professional Congress Organiser, PCO, for Emirates.

The strategic partnership will help Emirates build a strong MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibition) commercial brand in the meetings industry and better cater to its diverse and frequent business travellers. Thierry Antinori, Emirates Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer formalised the agreement with MCI's Founder and Chairman, Roger Tondeur, at the Emirates Group Headquarters.

"The MICE segment is rapidly growing and we are always looking to connect our customers to what matters to them. At Emirates, we are well positioned to cater to the needs of business travellers worldwide with the latest facilities we offer on our modern wide-body jets and excellent on board service from our international cabin crew who speak over 60 languages. Our partnership with MCI will allow us to work even more effectively on the complex requirements of the meetings industry making corporate travel more convenient and affordable for our customers," said Antinori.

The partnership will see Emirates connecting delegates from around the world to key business hubs such as Australia, Asia, Europe and the Americas. With a global reach spanning over 140 cities on six continents, Emirates will provide delegates from across the globe with one-stop connectivity between continents.

"MCI is proud to be the preferred PCO for Emirates, one of the world's leading airlines. The partnership between MCI and Emirates, global leaders in our respective industries, will only result in greater convenience for our shared customers. We are responsible for over 4,500 events annually and having Emirates as our official airline partner will streamline travel arrangements for delegates to and from their meetings," explained Tondeur.

The partnership agreement between Emirates and MCI will last for two years. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE Ambassador to South Africa launches Electronic Ratification System

posted on 28/08/2015

PRETORIA: The UAE Ambassador to the Republic of South Africa, Hamad Hareb Al Habsi, has launched the new Electronic Ratification System in the UAE Embassy in Pretoria.

The Ambassador said that the new electronic system provides fast and high quality service and security, which helps to provide excellent consular service.

Al Habsi also expressed his gratitude to the Ministry Of Foreign Affairs for striving to provide the best and latest technology to the embassy which conforms with the vision and policies of the UAE's wise leadership. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


MBRSLP presents second edition of Principals’ Day

posted on 28/08/2015

In an effort to further strengthen communications with stakeholders, the Mohammed bin Rashid Smart Learning Programme, MBRSLP, held its annual Principals' Day, now in its second year, on August 25th and 26th at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City. A total of 208 schools, which are now part of the programme, attended.

The two-day event provides a platform to open dialogue between the programme's management team and school principals, with the intended result of fostering a professional culture that promotes the continuous renewal of educational methods and tools to better serve students.

This year, Cycle 3 schools will begin implementing the programme across Grade 10 classrooms. MBRLSP is working tirelessly towards the completion of infrastructure provisions for Cycle 2 students, which include Grade 7, 8 and 9 students. Principals from Cycles 2 and 3 took part in this collaborative event which embodies change and improvement to raise the standards of education in the UAE to meet international standards.

The role of principals within the programme is to promote creativity in students, value their opinion and empower them to express themselves to reach their highest potential, both academically and personally. In order to reach this goal, the collaborative culture of the programme creates a shared sense of purpose, focus on long-term improvement of education in SLP schools and offers a platform for principals to share ideas, materials, and solutions.

"The two day event helps us work closely with the school principals and work out issues inside the classroom. Professional dialogue and team work are vital to the success of the programme and we encourage cooperation in improving the integration of technology in our educational processes," said Mohammed Gheyath, Director-General of the MBRSLP.

"The MBRSLP enriches the experience of teachers, students, school administrators and parents alike. The highly interactive environment has dramatically changed how teachers interact with students and promotes a flexible learning environment. Our students now have resources at their fingertips and no longer need to be solely dependent on their teachers. The programme has also helped school administrators assess their teachers' performance, teaching plans and students' performance in a more effective way, whilst allowing parents to watch their child's progress," said Noora Al Muhairi, Principal, Umm Suqeim Model School for Girls.

"We have organised workshops for all teachers and students involved in the MBRSLP, and anticipate that the programme will be highly successful in the classrooms where it has been implemented. All our students now have access to the necessary educational resources on their favourite smart devices. We expect the programme to broaden students' horizons, facilitate knowledge acquisition, and stimulate creativity, building a generation of innovators," said Walid Nasser, Principal, Mohammed Al-Fateh Model School in Sharjah, commenting on the expected numbers for the new scholastic year. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


UAE launches Cultural Week at Beijing International Book Fair

posted on 28/08/2015

The Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development yesterday launched the UAE Cultural Week as part of the country's participation in the Beijing International Book Fair 2015 (BIBF) as the 'Guest of Honour'.

The ministry said the Cultural Week seeks to introduce the UAE's Arab-rich culture, heritage, development, and progress model to the world, and interact culturally and socially with participating countries.

Through its wise and creative leadership and its culture-loving people, the UAE carries its own creative vision that promotes the principles of prosperity and development in its pioneering cultural renaissance, as well as its never-ending quest towards achieving a unique place among other countries in the different fields of sustainable development, mainly creative industries, culture and arts.

'Choosing the UAE as a guest of honour at the Beijing International Book Fair 2015 represents an exceptional achievement in the cultural relationship between the UAE and the People's Republic of China. The two countries have deep-rooted civilisational achievements that are thousands of years old represented by the Chinese civilisation in Southeast Asia and the Arab-Islamic one in central and western Asia represented by the UAE,' Afra Al Sabri, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, said during the ceremony, which was attended by Yang Zhijin, Chinese Vice Minister of Culture, Hakam Al Hashemi, Assistant Under-Secretary for Culture and Arts, Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, Saeed Za'al, Charge d'affaires, UAE Embassy in Beijing, and a group of active figures in the field of culture, arts, publishing and authorship in the country, including many visual artists and calligraphers from the Emirates Fine Arts Society, as well as several male and female practitioners of traditional crafts and a number of Emirati publishers.

Arab, Chinese and European cultural personalities also attended the event.

'Being the guest of honour, the UAE delegation will have the opportunity to bring to light the culture, art and heritage of the Emirati people and familiarise the Chinese audiences with the characteristics of the Emirati cultural identity, so as to build bridges of knowledge exchange and openness to the other through the values of tolerance, knowledge and human brotherhood,' she added.

Al Sabri said the UAE greatly valued and appreciated the journey that the Beijing International Book Fair had achieved over its long history which reflects the substantial richness and diversity of the different Asian cultural groups in general and the Chinese one in particular.

'We are also very grateful for being chosen the guest of honour at this very important cultural event,' she added.

The 22nd Beijing International Book Fair, one of the world's largest, will run from 26th to 30th August, at the New China International Exhibition Centre in Beijing. The 2015 fair attracted 2,270 publishers from 82 countries, an increase of 5 percent compared with last year, according to the organiser. The number of overseas participants to join the fair has risen 6.3 percent year-on-year. A total of 270,000 titles will be displayed in five halls, covering an area of 66,000 square metres.

A traditional highlight of the BIBF is that the guest country of honour always attracts quite a bit of attention every year.

This year, the UAE will stage a series of activities to introduce Chinese readers to Arab history, culture, film and art, including its famous Arabic calligraphy and Henna tattoos. The UAE stand features Emirates' corner design which reflects the country's continuous quest to develop and enhance its aesthetic taste and cultural and heritage identity. The corner was creatively designed in line with the spread of modern arts in the UAE. The structure itself with its corners, walls, ceilings and the overall external parts, represent prominent elements inspired by the Emirati heritage that are presented in a modern way combining both the cultural identity and the Emirati architecture with modern architecture.

A heritage photo gallery contains a visual record that has been captured by Emirati photographers reflecting their love for the country and its cultural and heritage legacy. The gallery also tells the story of civilisation, the building of a state, the journey of creating a union and the empowerment of the people. It includes photos that document the features and details of the Emirati everyday life both in the past and the present within its heritage and cultural dimensions.

Other corners feature Arabic calligraphy, fine arts, film screening, children, henna hand art, and traditional handicrafts. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


Bakeries that supply school canteens checked

posted on 28/08/2015

To ensure that every potential meal is a healthy experience for students, the Abu Dhabi Food and Control Authority (ADFCA) has carried out inspections across bakeries that supply food items to school canteens in the capital.

Six different teams inspected 22 facilities ahead of the approaching academic year, of which 11 were served with warnings for failing to comply with the Authority's established rules and regulations.

"Cleanliness of the premises as well as that of the workers', storing food items and maintaining accurate meal temperatures are some of the most common violations we tend to come across,” an ADFCA inspector told Gulf News, speaking on the sidelines of one of the evaluation tours held on Wednesday.

"Before carrying out inspections across eateries in the capital, we look at whether the ADFCA notebook — which contains comments from previous visits — has been kept, and if the Authority's training licence has been obtained and is also present on the premises,” he added.

The authority reported that eight kilos of sub-standard products had to be immediately seized.

During one of the tours held at one of the bakeries, ADFCA kept an eye on whether workers were wearing a coat and a mask to achieve maximum levels of safety and hygiene.

The Authority also scanned fridge temperatures, which ought to be between 0-4 degrees Celsius, sanitation and other ingredients stored in jars such as sugar, butter, and milk powder, among others.

This bakery was also inspected the week before and one of the main drawbacks was that not all the staff members had undergone ADFCA's training sessions. Currently, 70 per cent of the bakery's employees have completed them, of whom 50 per cent were able to pass.

Considered to be the authorised body to carry out inspections pertaining to food items in Abu Dhabi, ADFCA continues to implement regular examination checks across school canteens prior to the commencement of an academic term to ensure that owners adhere to the rules and regulations stipulated by them. – Gulf News -